Monday, January 17, 2005

SEXUALITY & NUDITY in Europe


(I decided to split my last entry and make it a full blown topic)

Dutchman and I just love the weekend uitslapen (oversleeping). We are the certified lazy butts and we cherish every moment we can get to linger in bed under the comforts of the warm duvets. Ah yes, we desperately need to win the Lotto!!!

“We are going to the Centrum (center) after boodschappen (grocery shopping), okay.” I ordered Dutchman, whilst standing outside the toilet door. Yeah he is inside busy doing what he must do, lol.

“Yes, that would be fine.” was all I heard from him.

“Good...” I muttered and quickly rushed to get myself ready, with Mr. Paracetamol in tow. Although my body is still on strike on a Saturday, I felt the need to go out and get some fresh air.

The weather was rather cold but dry, with intermittent rays of sun splashing throughout the horizon and its reflection mirroring the rustic Dutch architectures. We strolled the Centrum an window shopped, which in our book means - looking not buying, albeit a classic Dutch trait.

Afterwards we proceeded to Café Le Journal, our customary hang-out. I think the owners of this establishment should give us the customer award of the year. We are their loyal fans haha.
I must confess that the habit was formed due to this crucial reason: their reading collection. They all have the sizzling newspapers and magazines from fashion, business, socio-politics, home-lifestyle, music, and red hot gossips. Dutchman and I are hooked.

Perusing through the stacks of magazines displayed on top of this huge table in the middle of the cafe, a magazine caught my eye. Its one of those usual monthly fashion Dutch publications.

The cover of the magazine resembled something like this.

The magazine cover was very arresting: a studio foto of a group of real and normal women clad in their birthday suits.


I believe that this is not the first time I have seen pictures of naked real and normal women, like you and me, featured in a Dutch magazine, so I was not at all surprised. I mean goodness gracious, they even have these womens full names tagged in the article and what they do for a living and where they work! Heaven rain on me but isn’t exposing your flesh enough? Why provide the audience details of where you actually work? That’s like saying to any psychopath, “Stalk me please...”

I just can’t imagine myself, maybe I have such a pea brain, that people, strangers, literally anyone and everyone can see what my buttocks looked like... stripped naked and published for 16 million people to read.

With all these thoughts running in my mind, I quickly ran through the pages to read what these unclothed courageous women have to tell. The editorial was all about: What a woman wants with her body to be changed

“Hmm, interesting...” I thought.

As I turned the pages, I got amused by the sizes and shapes of their bodies. You see, they aren’t models, they have regular bodies so it is very easy to identify ourselves with them. And they aren’t really fat too.

The first woman in the line up wanted a strong abdomen. The next wanted her butt shaped better and fuller. Then the other wanted a nice set of perky boobs. Then came the fourth... uh, I was speechless...


The whole café loomed into darkness like an empty train tunnel, and only the humongous depiction in front of me gave light. Staring at me was something I thought I can only find in the adults section. For a moment, I thought I was holding the January edition of Playboy.

About half of the magazine page was a picture of a zoomed up woman’s vagina. WTF! Yes, her bloody VAGINA!!!

*Wipes sweat*


Her want: the sagging lips of her vagina re-touched...

OK, OK, OK! People relax please... (I have to relax! lol). Damn haha.

I guess the picture is but a normal portrayal of Dutch humanity because I try to prod the Dutchman to see the picture, instead he chastised me to behave. I was told to stop laughing and stop acting like a kid in public.

The normal European (or perhaps them Dutch only?) stratum of thinking when it comes to sexuality and nudity is abstruse, at least to me. Their mindset doesn’t directly translate to the physical realm but of sublime and pragmatic nature.

Freedom from malice? Freedom of expression? Of press? Art?

The wheels are turned the other way around here as displaying even a minut hint of mischievousness is taboo. These European cold meats do not show any malicious emotion... as they all want to say. On the contrary, you will end up relegated as the evil malevolent one for having such beastly thoughts. Yeah like what I just did.

How profound can this be, huh?

Ah well, just one of those scandalous revelations I experience living in Europe and in this tiny country of The Netherlands.

19 comments:

  1. when it comes to sex(or even in any topic), caucasians are more direct while we asians are conservative. sometimes balancing the two is the better thing to do.

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  2. Anonymous3:06 pm

    mell, right adam and eve were naked! :-p

    mum with 2 kids, thats my point! it was an ordinary magazine (wont mention the name lol) and a zoomed up photo of this womans vagina met my eyes. i was really shocked! i even saw the sagging thing lol! its like reality tv show, but this one in an article. her name was even there coz she was interviewed. goodness!!!

    luchie_g, yes thats correct though im not really the conservative asian type but i also doubt if a normal fashion magazine in lets say the USA for example would post a picture of their subject's vagina (the interviewed), LOL. in other western countries nudism is banned, here it proliferates and its just normal. the dutch for example get naked with their boobs smiling to the sun during summer while they sun bathe in their gardens. hehehe. hey i will check your site, thanks for dropping by!

    MissT

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  3. I personally think the Dutch leads in the liberal attitudes towards sexuality. And I bet the rate of sex crimes there is low compared to other less liberal western countries like the US or UK. It’s because I believe the ‘darker’ side of people’s psyche is played out and allowed to find an outlet before it ‘explodes’ resulting in the gruesome crimes as in rapes, etc. Like a safety valve that lets out steam so that the pressure cooker does not explode.
    But like you I still get shocked by these. Maybe because we were not used to or conditioned for it?

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  4. true enough. something scandalous for us seems nothing to them. here, you can get all those kinds of pictures of journalists and celebrities in all magazines during summer, when they remove those tiny stuffs off them..and yes, when i visited amsterdam, i just realized that france is conservative compared to the netherlands. :)

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  5. It's so funny for me to see how some things can seem so natural to me while it is so odd to other people. Just like with the recycling article, when you're used to things, it's perfectly normal in your eyes! I experience a lot with the Asians in my school though, that they find something so odd while it's so natural to me! Good entry!

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  6. CELIA, i dont know about crime rates here but you are right on target about the darker side of every human being being played out. the dutch are known to use reverse psychology in almost everything! i get shocked but amused at the same time, lol!

    ANA, france boasts of many nudist beaches too! if u come back in amsterdam, better buy urself a souvenir, those electronic psychedelic dildos u can see by the window display of every sex toy shop. use it to scare laurent hahaha

    ELJA, ALAS(!) a real dutch spoke! see, its just natural for u dutchies, but for us foreigners we are sooo tickled. LOL

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  7. CARRISSE, thanks dear :-)

    JOE, we dont have those censorship here so just imagine how shocked i was in the beginning lol. as for crime rate, i have no figures really. NL though is quite a peaceful land if compared to other western countries. still it has its own sex related crimes, perhaps on a small scale. and if this may of interest to you, the #1 notorious crime here is BIKENAPPING! lol!

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  8. Somehow I believe that we all should be comfortable in our nakedness...but its our culture that makes us cringe at the thought and sight of naked bodies not our (or our spouse's) own, unless we're psychos...

    but like CK implied, probably that would solve the problems of sex-related crimes. Gaya ng kasabihang Pilipino, "Kung ano ang bawal, yun ang masarap." Tanggalin ang pagbabawal, wala na ang excitement...wala nang interested.

    On another note, if we are so comfortable naman in our nakedness, why want to change anything?...

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  9. Anonymous10:04 pm

    Quote Manang: "On another note, if we are so comfortable naman in our nakedness, why want to change anything?"

    Hhhmm, I think the fashion industry Manang will go on strike! LOL!

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  10. Anonymous1:24 am

    Well it must be warmer in Holland - I'm cold here (Manchester) with clothes on! Still them Dutch, try to shock and push liberalism as far as they can I think...

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  11. Owzy,

    I think the Dutch are just themselves hehe. They have a different way of thinking, it's on a unique level i must say. I hope i have warmed you with this topic, LOL.

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  12. Anonymous1:21 am

    I need to move to the Netherlands.

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  13. Anonymous7:44 pm

    iba nga talaga mga caucasians, very liberal in so many ways unlike asians.

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  14. Anonymous10:54 am

    ANONYMOUS1: sure move here! But like i said these northern europeans have no concept of malice. Be sure to adapt to that. :)

    ANONYMOUS2: true, but even amongst caucasians there are differences when it comes to sexuality and nudity. Americans are more prude, the South Europeans and Brits are more discreet, though nudity is also accepted there, but not as elaborate up north. The northern Europeans are "just" different lol. You have to come and live here to see the difference.

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  15. Anonymous7:28 pm

    As mentionned above, if the Dutch are so liberal and comfortable with themselves, why an article devoted to everything women hate about themselves?!

    I don't have a problem with nudity, but when nudity is presented as a flaw, something to be fixed, rather than a celebration of human beauty, how much fun can that be?

    Comfort with nudity shouldn't be seen as black or white. There are many shades of gray depending on how it's presented.

    Thanks for reading!

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